FEBRUARY DEAL EVENTS:
- Groundhog Day (2nd)
- Super Bowl (7th)
- Valentine’s Day (14th)
- Presidents’ Day (15th)
- Mardi Gras (16th)
- Black History Month
- American Heart Month
Every mid-winter flip of the calendar is a step away from winter doldrums – but also ski season, snowmen, and hot cocoa. February, the final month of winter, may be short on days (and sunlight). But this year, in particular, it’s long on cheerful holidays to celebrate – and shop for!
In addition to a bounty of seasonal deals, there’s something fun on the calendar to warm everyone’s heart this month.
Watch out for that first step. It’s a doozy!!
If you are a fan of Bill Murray, have young children in the house, or just like cute furry rodents with adorable overbites, you’ll want to geek out on Groundhog’s Day on February 2. Keep an eye on Gobbler’s Knob in western Pennsylvania to find out if Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow and darts back into his burrow, signifying six more weeks of winter. Should the plump woodchuck stay calmly in the sun, we’re on our way to early spring.
Not enchanted with the oh-so-scientific premise of a groundhog fresh out of hibernation making the weather forecast?
Best Day for Big Screens
There’s another big game right around the corner – and the perfect excuse to shop for that 65-inch 4K HDR television you’ve been eyeing since Black Friday. The Super Bowl is Sunday, Feb. 7 with a 6:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time kickoff.
Super Bowl LV pits Tom Brady’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers against defending NFL champs Kansas City Chiefs. Will Patrick Mahomes take a bite out of Brady’s legacy? Hard to know – but an entertaining halftime show and amusing commercials are always a safe bet.
Whether you’re tuning in for the football or the entertaining commercials in between plays, retailers know the Super Bowl motivates all kinds of consumers to update their big screens. So this is the moment television sellers lower their prices – and make way for expensive newer technologies that will hit their shelves in March.
Once you’ve made the big purchase, be sure to hit the supermarket a few days before the big game to stock up on game-day snacks and the ingredients for your famous buffalo chicken dip.
All You Need Is Love
Don’t let that new big screen distract you so much that you forget to prepare for Valentine’s Day – 14 February. Yes, it’s time for Cupid’s arrows to fly once again.
Whether it’s jewelry, flowers, or all the kitschy Valentine’s decorations your heart desires, brainstorm and shop around to score the best deal on all tokens of your affection.
Hint: it may be after the holiday, so perhaps we’re printing a photo of that fine jewelry item and slipping it in a card to be delivered after dessert.
Trust us. Fine jewelry is an investment, a statement. An heirloom. So it’s not worth blowing the budget on artificially inflated purchases. Jewelry vendors are often laden with obscure, small brands that can get away with inflating their base prices and then sneakily slashing. Don’t fall prey to these scams; save your budget for bigger baubles instead. Your sweetheart will be OK with it.
Ditto red roses; best to purchase these on 15 February and beyond.
Not in the mood for romance? Snuggle up on the sofa to scroll for winter clothing deals that pop up perennially this time of year. Then get silly as you load up on silly wigs, sparkly masks, or even beads for the home edition of Carnival or Mardi Gras. Shop local and order King Cakes from a nearby bakery. And then make or bulk order purchases of plastic beads to fling at the kiddos as they run topless away from yet another Zoom class!
Let’s not jump straight to the end of the month, though. Here’s a closer look at what should – and, for budget’s sake, shouldn’t – be on your shopping list this month, whether you’re filling the cart online or treating yourself to a (masked, safe!) trip to the mall.
February Deal Shopping Essentials
1. Invest in Winter Style
Yes, you’re California’ dreamin’ on such a winter’s day, but don’t stick your head in the sand just yet, or you’ll miss out on amazingly low prices on winter-weather clothing, footwear, outerwear, workout gear… the works. Stores seek to unload their inventory of sweaters and boots before spring blooms. So it’s a great moment to finally buy those leather boots, purchase your favorite long-sleeve shirt in a few more colors to stock up for next winter’s ski trip, or take advantage of deep discounts on luxe fabrics like cashmere. The time could also be right for a stylish new coat to add to your wintry mix; many sizes are usually still available, particularly early this month.
Add-ons to your purchases can include candles and other hygge needs like shaggy throw pillows as well as beauty purchases for dry skin. It’ll all likely be marked down, whether you’re at a department retailer or mom-and-pop shop.
2. Don’t Sleep on Mattress Deals This President’s Day
After all the stress of the pandemic, who couldn’t use a good night’s sleep? The celebration of George Washington’s birthday happens on Monday, 15 February this year, meaning that President’s Day weekend is layered atop Valentine’s Day weekend. So now is the perfect time to treat you and your honey to a blissful night’s sleep – every night – with the purchase of a new mattress. Big box retailers, online vendors, and furniture specialty stores alike historically offer deep discounts on mattresses this weekend; this is the first three-day weekend shoppers have to peruse wares since the Christmas holiday.
Many top mattress brands offer apps, online quizzes, and deep reams of information on their websites to help you ascertain your mattress needs. Use these tools so you and your partner have a sense of what will lure you both into that deep sleep before you trek to stores that may be taking health precautions this year.
Add-ons will include linens, also typically discounted during President’s Day weekend, as well as some towels. If you missed the linen sales in January, now is a great time to freshen up!
3. Freshen Up Your Perfume and Cologne Selection
While jewelry and flowers are likely to purchase better delayed until the latter half of this month or even March, perfume and cologne are typically priced well ahead of 14 February. And while the spread of virtual work may have sapped our motivation to dress up each day, it’s pretty easy to add a spray of savoir-faire to your routine – even if only commuting to the living room. Look for boxed sets that include freebies like scented lotions to complement the Eau de Toilette or Eu de Parfum of your choosing.
Add-on: Consider upgrading to a more concentrated version of your favorite scent, as these are often priced more competitively for Valentine’s Day.
4. Hit BUY on that Big-Screen TV
If you’re in the market for a new television, it will serve you well to study up on the latest technologies, from mini-LED to Next-Gen, before heading to the store. Understand that some of the most recent innovations – like 8K – won’t be included in discounted sets this February. But don’t fret; the best consumer guides point out that television producers and movie studios usually lag behind on creating programming that lives up to the abilities of these new television sets, anyway.
It’s worth a trip to a big-box retailer to peer into many different screens to see with your own eyes what all the technology really translates into: clearer pictures, richer tones, more defined gradients. Then think about the room where your television lives; bright lighting there might lead you to choose an LED display, for example.
Once you’ve found your dream screen, take time to shop around, virtually or in person, to find the best prices. Head to big box stores like Walmart, Target, or your nearest Best Buy to price check. Don’t shy away from bargaining with these stores to advocate for match prices or layered discounts. The worst they can say is no, right?
Add-on: Focused on seeing the big game as clearly as possible? Don’t forget that the Superbowl is also the biggest pizza ordering day in the U.S. each year. Order well ahead of kickoff should you want your share of the dough!
5. Keep Up Your Reading Resolution with New Page Turners
Are you searching for good books or movies after so many days stuck in quarantine? Let the season guide your choices: February is Black History Month as well as American Heart Month. Particularly after anti-racist protests in the summer of 2020, it’s a critical moment to pick up the works of classic and contemporary black writers or documentarians alike. Many booksellers will be offering discounts on works illustrating black people’s experiences in America. Look for promotions on works penned or recorded by black authors. More focused on matters of the heart? Many health-related books will be discounted now that health-related New Year’s Resolutions have been fully considered – and abandoned? – by consumers.
Add-on: Don’t forget to shop local where possible, doing your bit to keep neighborhood book stores alive. Many will be offering discounts now to generate foot – or web – traffic.
Better Skip These
- Just as shopkeepers can demand more for umbrellas during the rain, so too can sporting goods shops peddle ski gear at high prices in the winter. Immediately useful items will always be marked up, so best to wait until late spring or even early summer before stocking up on any winter sporting gear.
- Why are pastels always so tempting in springtime? Don’t ponder this question too hard; just skip past the breezy skirts and lightweight ankle-length trousers of springtime for now. These and summer 2021 styles will all be marked way up upon their debut. Also, pass on swimwear unless you’re heading to the Maldives sometime soon.
- Pass on jewelry, particularly fine jewelry, during the first half of February. Large stores and small retailers alike are known to artificially inflate prices before slapping on heart-shaped discount stickers around Valentine’s Day. Be smart, and funnel those savings into bigger and better bling for your sweetheart. Know too that jewelers see far fewer customers in March and April and so will be more open to negotiating then.
- Dreams of spring break travel may be percolating into your dreams this time of year – Oh, OK, dominating your every waking moment – but now isn’t the time to purchase matching luggage sets. Those will be priced better as the spring and summer holidays approach; look for 2020 or even 2019 styles to be significantly marked down in 2021.